Pick Your Rock and Metal

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

NEWS: Big Truck rolling into town; Metal2TheMasses; Nightrage; Bloodstock; diary clashes; and, so much more

THE Big Truck is back on the road...Yep, in case you haven't been keeping up-to-date with all things in the Trucker Diablo world, their Pledge Music campaign was successful, the album has been polished off, and now the sound of that powerful engine is ready to roar again.
Rabid fans are already clearing all obstacles on the road to Ahoghill for the launch of the album 'Rise Above The Noise' on March 7th at the Diamond Rock Club...
Support comes from the Gasoline Outlaws, who have been kicking up a storm in double quick time with barely a couple of gigs under their belts and songs chock full of riffs big sing-a-long choruses 
For the dedicated (your faithful editor included) warm up for the Big Truck will be down in Limelight2 from five bells, when Heat Two of Metal To The Masses takes place. The competition, in case you didn't know, has, for the winner, a slot at the massive, prestigious Bloodstock Festival in August.
The first heat saw Sorrowfall and Altus qualify for the semi-finals: and the four-band shoot-out on March 7th will see Zombified, Donum Dei, Rule of Six and Cavehill.
The two winners will be selected by votes, with 50% of them from the audience and 50% from the judges. And, judging by last week's turn-out you can be sure that every vote counts.
Careful planning means you can see both gigs. You can (a) drive to Ahoghill after Metal To The Masses or (b) get the 9:20 train to Ballymena and taxi to Ahoghill and enjoy a pint. Who is it to say which is the best option...
Bloodstock's already jam-packed line-up has been boosted by an announcement today of five more acts to what is shaping up to be one of the most anticipated festivals of the year.

And, given that Lawnmower Deth, Oaf, Ethereal, Saille and the Dirty Sanchez lads, Pritchard Vs Dainton.

Add this to the already announced line-up...including Trivium, Sabaton, Within Temptation, Opeth, Rob Zombie, Black Label Society, Godflesh, Cannibal Corpse, Sepultura, Orange Goblin, 1349, Ensiferum, Nuclear Assault, Onslaught and many, many more.


For those of you who enjoy some dirty, old-fashioned, gypsy-tinged rock 'n' roll, don't forget that the Quireboys are making a return visit to the Diamond, Ahoghill.

With a superb Belfast show in 2014 they also plied their acoustic set earlier to great acclaim.

Well, with a new album due out in March - 'St Cecilia And The Gypsy Soul' - the good time, rock 'n' roll experience of Quireboys unplugged is coming to Ahoghill Rock City on March 28th.

If you've never experienced Quireboys live then this is one for your diary. Choice cuts, classics in a new light and some surprises as always from Spike and co.

And, here's a wee thing to note...St Cecilia And The Gypsy Soul comes as a four-cd pack with 'Halfpenny Dancer' and two live CDs from the tour of the same name...


Greek/Swedish metallers Nightrage are back on the metal scene with new release 'The Puritan'. It's been four years since they released 'Insidious' and they have a new label (Despotz Records) and a new singer in the shape of Ronnie Nyman (formerly of Always War).

The break and new shape sees the band re-take their melodic death metal roots and move to what they claim will be a "pure metal kick in the balls"

They've even managed to recruit Gus G to add solos to the song 'When Gold Turns To Rust...

It is fair to say that Nightrage could turn their potential into further international success with this release. And, here's a wee sample of what you can expect...


Decisions, decisions....March is packed with gigs (Europe/BSR, The Answer, Blazefest etc etc) but Easter weekend is already looking to be a corker...but, there will be decisions to take.

Saturday April 4th sees Joe Lynn Turner (he of Rainbow fame) play the Voodoo. Around the same time Danny Vaughn and Dan Reed are joining forces in the Diamond to bring their Snake Oil to Ahoghill...

It'll be a new sound from these two distinctive performers, who collectively have years of experience and two mighty sets of vocal chords.

And, the same night sees, Death Of A Salesman, By Conquest Or Consent, Scimitar and Figurehead play the Bar With No Name.

Ach, by the power of Lemmy it's going to be a difficult choice for rockers and metallers, but a choice must be made, and let no-one argue that there's a shortage of shows here in Norn Iron....

What can be sure is that we'll up early the next morning to make the odyssey, the journey of a lifetime to the Siege of Limerick.

After all it's only right that we support Rabid Bitch of the North, Maverick, By Any Means, Altus, War Iron and Astralnaut as they mount an invasion across the border.

And, what's more, even though you have to pay to travel the Siege of Limerick is free entry!

Let the mayhem commence!


Now, with all that ahead let's take a recap on what's taking place in March...

On March 3rd, as mentioned earlier Europe, Black Star Riders and The Amorettes play the Ulster Hall, and the next day Chris Jericho brings Fozzy to Limelight2, with support from The Dirty Youth.

With no chance of a break The Hornets play QUB Bar Sub on the 5th with The Answer in Limelight2 the next day. That Friday also sees Hibagon/TBVS/Molarbear/Berzerker Blood are at the Warzone Centre.

As mentioned before Saturday, March 7th sees Metal2TheMasses in Limelight2 and Trucker Diablo in the Diamond....Oh and Weed Priest, Astralnaut, Nomadic Rituals and Wardomized are in the Voodoo.

Royal Blood are playing a sold-out show in the Ulster Hall on Sunday March 8th.

NWOBHM legends Angel Witch play Limelight2 with the supporting cast including Darkest Era, Rabid Bitch of the North and Stereo Nasty.

If you haven't got a ticket for the sold-out Papa Roach then there is an alternative. Yes, the annual Blazefest takes place as once again Darren and Dawn Shields-Petit host Blazefest 5 in the Empire Music Hall with Screaming Eagles, Maverick, Sinocence, Conjuring Fate and The Irontown Diehards. All proceeds go to the Royal Hospital for Sick Children.

On March 28th Sinocence launch 'No Gods. No Masters Volume II' in Limelight2 with Conjuring Fate, Donum Dei and Gasoline Outlaws...and then a quick trip up to Ahoghill for the Quireboys...

And on Sunday, March 29th Coltsblood, Ninkharsag, War Iron, and Nomadic Rituals play the Voodoo, Belfast.

Nah, there's no gigs in Norn Iron!



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